Amherst Swimming & Diving
1202 Alumni Gym
Amherst College
Amherst, MA 01002

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413-542-2026 (fax)
 
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Amherst Teams to Participate in "Hour of Power"

Hour of Power 2008-09
The Lord Jeffs after last year's "Hour of Power" event.

AMHERST, MA – It is nearly impossible to find anyone whose life has not been affected by cancer, whether it is through a friend, family member or teammate. Members of the Amherst College men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have found one more way to fight back: the fourth annual Ted Mullin “Leave it in the Pool” Hour of Power Relay for Pediatric Sarcoma Research. The event is sponsored by the Carleton College swimming and diving teams and is set for Tuesday, Nov. 10.

Amherst College joins more than 6,000 athletes from 124 college, high school and club teams across the nation—as well as students who are studying abroad—to participate in the “Hour of Power.” The event is meant to honor those who are fighting or have succumbed to cancer, including former Carleton swimmer Edward H. “Ted” Mullin, who passed away from synovial sarcoma, a rare soft-tissue cancer, in September of 2006.

The event—held in each team’s home pool—is a one-hour, all-out, leave-it-in-the-pool practice consisting of continuous relays. Wherever possible, participating teams begin and finish the “Hour of Power” workout at the same time. Although some teams are forced to schedule their event at another time due to various conflicts, the official start time is set for 5 p.m. (ET) on Nov. 10.

First held on Nov. 7, 2006, the “Hour of Power” Relay has grown from 15 teams the first year to the current 124 teams with more than 6,000 student-athletes on four continents. Since the event began three years ago, participants have raised more than $112,000 for the Ted Mullin Fund for Pediatric Sarcoma Research at the University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital where Ted received treatment. For every dollar raised, the University of Chicago has pledged to match it tenfold. Additional philanthropic support has allowed The Ted Mullin Fund to currently be worth nearly $1,000,000 in the lab. The “Hour of Power” also aims to promote team spirit and to generate awareness of sarcoma, a rare cancer that disproportionately affects adolescents and young adults.

Funds raised during the event act as seed funding for the University of Chicago pediatric sarcoma research program, allowing collaborative efforts between clinicians and physician-scientists in the identification of the causes of sarcoma, at the most basic molecular and cellular levels. With a team of dedicated pediatric oncologists, orthopedists and radiation therapists in place, the Ted Mullin Fund enabled the University of Chicago to recruit Stephen X. Skapek, M.D., an expert in the study and treatment of sarcomas. Dr. Skapek and team are working in the lab to translate new scientific discoveries into improved therapies for sarcoma patients like Ted Mullin.

The Amherst swimmers are selling “Cancer Sucks” t-shirts to help raise money for a donation to the fund. The “Cancer Sucks” theme is one that was started by Mullin to raise money for a Relay for Life team. It has become an unofficial theme of the "Hour of Power" and the Amherst swimmers are hoping to spread the message while contributing to the Ted Mullin Fund.

For more information, please contact Amherst College Assistant Swim Coach and co-founder of the event, Karin Brown.